Priest Molestation

By Robin Lloyd
City News Service
November 29, 1995

Arraignment of a Catholic priest suspected of molesting dozens of young boys over a 20-year period was reset today for Feb. 5, then he was booked and released on his own recognizance.

Sue Griffith, mother of one of Father Ted Llanos' supposed victims, was in court in Long Beach, and she spoke to reporters outside a short time later.

I felt sad for (Llanos)," she said. I recognize that he is a victim of the church. If there'd been a fellowship, and a feeling of belonging among the hierarchy there ... certainly they would have been able to say there's something wrong with Father Ted."

Her now 23-year-old son Scott was the first of 24 young men who have come forward so far to make the allegations against Llanos, who until recently had been in a Catholic Church recovery facility in Suitland, Md.

Over the course of his career in Southern California, the short and now balding priest was assigned to six parishes, usually those in which an elementary school was part of the complex.

In a photo shown on TV and in newspapers recently, a smiling Llanos was shown in clerical collar and appeared to be dark-haired, with a dark beard.

He wore dark-framed glasses.

In court today, the 49-year-old defendant was a man with less hair, no beard, appeared downcast and wore a gray business suit.

Llanos, who faces 38 felony counts of child sexual molestation, supposedly targeted altar boys and, according to Griffith, admitted to some allegations after her son came forward on Sept. 16, 1994.

She said Scott Griffith, now 23, told Monsignor Tim Dyer and Father Terry Richie that Llanos had molested him years earlier.

According to Griffith, Llanos was brought to the chancery the next day and was asked if it were true and said it was.

Since then, a total of two dozen victims have come forward, said Thomas H. Economus, president of the Chicago-based Survivors of Clergy Sexual Abuse Linkup Inc.


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